History and Traditions

  • Five days that ended an empire

    In the space of less than a week in 1917, workers in Russia overturned the old order and set the stage for a year of revolution.

  • She stood on the barricades

    Elisabeth Dmitrieff was a socialist and a fighter in the Paris Commune who sought to improve conditions for working women.

  • A day to prepare for conquering the enemy

    A leaflet issued by Russian socialists 100 years ago to honor Working Women's Day anticipated the revolution that began that day.

  • What do we mean by a "united front"?

    If revolutionary socialists are a minority among non-revolutionaries, on what terms should they seek united work in struggles?

  • When Russia had a YUGE revolution

    The anniversary of the Russian Revolution brings to mind the similarities between Tsar Nicholas II and a certain other dim tyrant.

  • Take all power into the hands of your soviets

    A historian of the Russian Revolution looks at how revolutionaries put their belief in workers' self-emancipation into practice.

  • For a provisional revolutionary government

    Weeks before the uprising against the Tsar, the Bolsheviks agitated for a one-day strike with the aim of advancing workers' power.

  • Only a provisional government can bring peace

    With the social crisis intensifying, Russian socialists from the Mensheviks called for a provisional government to replace the Tsar.

  • Do protests matter?

    It's often difficult for ordinary people to imagine we can have an impact on how society is organized. Mass protests can aid our imaginations.

  • The American tradition of refusing refugees

    Donald Trump's ban on Muslim refugees is part of a shameful history that includes U.S. government policies to block European Jews fleeing the Nazis.

  • Are people naturally xenophobic?

    According to conventional wisdom, Donald Trump's xenophobia is a cruder form of a trait we all share because it's built into our human nature.

  • The day of the people's wrath is near

    In a foreshock of the revolution to come, Russian socialists called for a protest strike on the anniversary of a previous uprising.

  • Socialist organization in the time of Trump

    Thousands of people are asking whether it's time to join the socialists in order to resist Trump--and the system that gave rise to him in the first place.

  • The myth of the leaders and the led

    Are people products of their society or shapers of it? Or both? The first installment of our "User's Guide to Marxism" provides some answers.

  • What we did in Iowa to chase away the Klan

    The Midwest Network to Stop the Klan was an example of successful anti-racist organizing in the 1990s that holds lessons for today's left.

  • To the revolutionary students of Russia

    As the first installment in a series to mark 100 years since Russia 1917, we publish a leaflet from Bolshevik-influenced students.

  • Mixed up about the system

    Working people accept ideas perpetuated by class society at the same time as their lived experiences lead them to different answers.

  • Was America ever great?

    Donald Trump promises to "Make America great again"--which begs the question that Thanksgiving raises about the real history of the U.S.

  • The revolutionary legacy of the Black Panthers

    Founded 50 years ago, the Panthers won a mass audience for revolutionary politics on a scale unrivaled in the U.S. since the 1930s.

  • "Learning to Think" today

    SocialistWorker.org republishes an essay by Leon Trotsky with a comment on how it applies today to the left's debate about Syria.

  • Daydream believers

    In this excerpt from his 1986 book, Bailing Out the System, Ian Birchall examines the utopian roots of social democracy.

  • Eyewitness to Hungary’s revolution

    Sixty years ago, Hungarian workers rose up in defiance of intense repression and challenged the Stalinist dictatorship.

  • Who's going to be the lesser evil in 1968?

    A classic from socialist Hal Draper argues that the continual questioning of "Who is the lesser evil?" is a disaster for the left.

  • Organization without authority?

    If people organize together to achieve social change, they submit themselves to some form of authority. The question is what form?

  • Reaching out for freedom with their own hands

    For Karl Marx, the heart of socialism was always the self-emancipation of the working class--a struggle "from below" to create a new society.